Thursday, December 13, 2007

Free Software v/s Proprietary Software

This was one of my Best Paper Presentation.

Which I did last year, at Inter – Management competition held at PUMBA.

I think I was too young, to speak on this vast & controversial topic, but still I gave my best.

My paper was in favor of Free Software.

Yesterday when I just went through my paper, there were lot many thing which I did not agree today.

It happens many times – we hold an opinion about some thing at some time but as the time passes we change and our view points too, we do not agree to what we believed few days or years ago.

As a Student, I was right to promote Free Software. But as a Developer, if I keep my stand the same & if some one tells me to give away my source code free of cost, which I won’t ever, people will conclude “She does not believe in what ever she says”.

Free Software doest speak of price it is all about liberty.

It gives us freedom :

  • To run the software for any purpose.
  • To access the Source Code.
  • To Redistribute copies.
  • To improve and release your own version.

Richard Stallman was the founder of Free Software Foundation. My research work on Free Software landed me up reading articles on & by Stallman. He was so clear in his though & strong at the point that “Proprietary Software has no future

I was getting crazy about him. For 2 days I kept my topic aside and gathered details about him. Whom ever I met I just kept talking about his, and accidentally I did this with Abi my friend who studied at VIT Vellor. I felt J when he told me that he has met him when he had come down to his college for a seminar on Linux.

Lucky Guy!!!

Ok, lets not loose the track………we were on Free vs Proprietary Software.

Microsoft products is another name for Proprietary Software. Which has License & Renewal License , Product key ……..charged downloads etc……

Impact of Free over Proprietary:

  • Reduction in Number of clients.
  • Lack of motivation to the Programmers.
  • Software Society getting categorized.
If a day comes when a programmer cannot claim copyright on the software he has created and has to make it free, how many programmers will still put in 100%? Free software theory sounds more like communist ideas - everything for the society and nothing (or hardly anything) for your own benefit. Proprietary software sounds more like capitalism.

Even still as of now there are companies like SuSE, Red Hat, Sun Microsystems, etc. who are financially doing good on free software, but is everything they dish out truly free? (Lets not try answering this one)There are no free lunches and there will never be.

I am not supporting or discouraging Open Source / Free Software. I think debating over this is point less. It differs from Organization to Organization, Programmer to programmer, Client to Client and finally depend on individuals as to what he or she wants to give back to the society.

What I have decided is to work as a commercial programmer but will also start contributing toward Open Source.

Warning: Please don’t take this post as Sun vs Microsoft or Stallman vs Bill Gates.


pallavivaval said...

Hello Bhavya,

It was really good and wonderful experience that you have gain in marathon. What I was thought? If I was there then definitely I show you blue flag for only tried people. Please do not get annoy, because I am joking. As I thought that today you are a part of our collage, you are part of talent, you are part of genius……. And know you are became part of marathon because of your parents say thanks to them and salute them from heart that’s all. Apart from all my English is still not good.
I hope you understand my english and thank you for your best wishes.

Pallavi Vaval

Vishal said...

hi bhavya,

well i wish you could be their to listen his voice when Sir Richard stallman came to vellore 2 years back.

trust me i have his autograph and why he had given me that day because we are more inclined towards the free software.. he love people who really understand the importance of free ware and proprietary..

vishal iyer

sun said...

Well written Bhavya...
I do support free software but in order to live we need money which doesn't come free..

sun said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Bhavya said...

@Pallavi: Thanks for those kind words & appreciation. I want to see u in the next marathon with which ever color flag you like. I always thank my parents for every thing not only for marathon...
You are doing well in your English.

@Vishal: I too wish the same…..any ways I am feeling J for the
second time. Ok as per your say Stallman loves me ( happy hmm ) as I understand
the importance & utility of Freesoftware.

@Sunit: Thanks…man. Good to know that u support FreeSoftware.
You are right ……………… is always appended with some % like (20% free)etc but never they say only free.